Turning off the plastic tap: 20 of your top tips

We asked for your suggestions: how can people avoid or reduce their plastic consumption? Here are 20 of our favourites tips

1. Refuse plastic when offered by a retailer; they’ll soon reconsider their packaging if *they* have to deal with its disposal – Catherine G

2. Ask yourself if the plastic item can be used more than once. If not, try very hard to avoid it – Sallie G

3. Make your own deodorant, soap and toothpaste. Use soap nuts in the washing machine – Lorraine H

4. Using bicarb, vinegar and lemons for household cleaning. It cuts out plastic and is better for your health and the planet’s – Karen S

5. Make more food from scratch. Pressed for time? Buy a slow cooker – Stuart F

6. Ask yourself if you really need the thing you are buying, can you reuse/repurpose something you already have? – Poppy K

7. Ditch tea bags (most contain plastic). Instead, channel your inner nanna and use tea leaves and a strainer for your brew – Christian S

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8. Buy local! Our eggs come in boxes and the meat from the butcher uses far less packaging – Sarah C

9. Block butter and patience – Xan P

10. Start keeping a Twitter record of plastic you use and changes you make to stop using it. Motivational, educational and can challenge retailers directly – Paul R

11. Ask yourself do I need this? It stops me buying all sorts of c**p destined for landfill – Denise B

12. Carry a spork with you whenever you go out: no more bendy plastic forks in cafes, no more coffee stirrers – Hannah V

13. I try to base my purchasing decisions on the amount of packaging used. The brands or products with the least plastic win – Alex P

14. Get involved in actions lobbying the government to introduce environmentally friendly laws so these changes are making a bigger impact globally – Lilian L

15. Buy clothes and knit clothes that are acrylic free – Sian M

16. Take a refillable water bottle everywhere you go; wrap food in beeswax wrap; buy loose fruit and veg; refuse straws; reuse bags – Kate B

17. Get an allotment. Grow your own fruit and veg and freeze it. Get a milkman. Keep hens. Share with neighbours. Refashion clothes – Helen N

18. Use the paper mushroom bags for loose fruit and veg if you buy them in the supermarket – Poppy L

19. Wash with soap! So many lovely natural soaps to try – Nell J

20. Refuse plastic, carry your own bags, coffee mugs and containers and chat endlessly to everyone in a happy and positive way about why. Be the change and be happy! – Jeremy H

Featured image: collage of products sold at the Earth.Food.Love zero-waste shop in Totnes, photographed by Tara Moore


This article is part of a special focus on zero-waste pioneers, which also features in Positive News magazine. Subscribe now to get the magazine delivered to your door each quarter.

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